Investigations on FIFA boss Infantino: "It's important to sift through this store now"

Investigations on FIFA boss Infantino: "It's important to sift through this store now"
  • The Swiss Federal Prosecutor's Office has been investigating Fifa since 2015 in two dozen cases.
  • But now the Fifa investigators themselves become the focus of investigations.
  • FIFA President Gianni Infantino seems to enjoy special status with the Swiss judiciary.

From Johannes Aumüller and Thomas Kistner

The way from the headquarters of the Football World Federation to the delicate appointment is not long. The restaurant is located at Zurich main station Au Premier, by car, about fifteen minutes away from the headquarters of Fifa. Four people will meet there on 22 April 2016 for a one-hour exchange: Gianni Infantino, FIFA President, Michael Lauber, Chief of the Federal Prosecutor's Office (BA), as well as one high-ranking member of their organizations.

It was the second meeting of BA and Fifa leaders in four weeks. And it had consequences. On Wednesday, the supervisory authority informed the Federal Prosecutor's Office of the SZ, it now clarify "the background of the meetings between the Federal Prosecutor Michael Lauber and the FIFA President Gianni Infantino from the supervisory". She does not comment on ongoing clarifications. This is delicate: The Fifa investigators themselves become the focus of investigations.

Infantinos dubious business with the television rights

The meeting at the end of April 2016 is tricky because at the time Infantino was no longer just the new Fifa boss; but the person who played a central role in a recently filed with the Federal Attorneys arbitration to a business with television rights. Two weeks before the meeting there had been a raid of the Berne investigators at Europe's Football Union (Uefa), was opened a criminal case on suspicion of unfair business care – against unknown. Trigger was an SZ report on the train of Panama Papers about a disreputable TV business from the noughties.

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Comment by Thomas Kistner

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At that time responsible Uefa director, who signed the contract: Infantino. Shortly thereafter, he made a career in the Uefa, until February 2016, he was Secretary General there, then he moved to the Fifa top. Former contract partner of Uefa, who made a good deal, was the company Cross Trading, She belonged to Jinki's father and son – and in April 2016, the Argentines had long been hanging on the hook of US justice for windy rights deals.

The Swiss Federal Prosecutor's Office investigates in two dozen procedures

So there was this raid in the Uefa headquarters, where Infantino had just left the regiment – the man who had signed a questionable contract. Would the BA still be allowed to sit with him without at least treating him as an informant?

The BA puts the meeting on SZ request in the context of those four weeks earlier, on March 22, 2016. Background of the first meeting: The BA identified since 2015 in the football sump around the Fifa, it is about two dozen procedures. In light of this investigation and the recent election Infantinos to Fifa boss asked the World Association for a meeting, says the BA. This was a "determination of location", the Fifa is indeed a display and injured in this complex. On the basis of this position determination, then "a second and concluding meeting" took place in the "Au Premier" "for the clarification of procedural questions". The BA does not answer concrete questions about the second meeting, for which the general conditions had changed considerably because of the new criminal procedure.

In addition to the supervisory authority, parliamentarians who belong to the Administrative Examination Commission (GPK) for the courts and the Federal Prosecutor's Office have also become concerned. "We will certainly take up the issue in our next debate with the GPC and the BA," says Thomas Hardegger, who represents the Socialist Group in the panel, the SZ: "Only then is it clear whether it needs further clarifications, hearings, reports and who gets it. "

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